Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Late in 2011 I launched on "reading" the series Outlander by Diana Gabladon. I have the word "reading" in quotes because I am primarily an audio book listener.

For those not familiar with this series, Outlander is the story of nurse called Claire at the close of World War II, who accidentally time travels back to the 1700's and falls in love with a Scottish Highlander called Jamie Fraser. And thus begins an engrossing story that is both a love story, an adventure, and a historical study of life during that time - with a little bit of fantasy and sexy love scenes thrown in for good measure. (and, oh my, the love scenes are so juicy! My daughter, if she is reading this post is probably rolling her eyes right now ... but her mom is just as human as she is ... so there!!)

The series is currently at 6 very large books with the first book titled Outlander. A 7th book is promised for 2013 - and it is also promised to not be the last book! (Yeah!! - Thank you Ms. Gabaldon). If you love massive family sagas, epic love stories, swash buckling adventure, and peeks into the way people lived during the 1700s, then this is a story for you.

With the largeness of this story, I was very encouraged by the author's ability to introduce new characters at a pace that is easy to follow. So often the author feels compelled to throw all the characters into the first few chapters, leaving me with a dizzy feeling of wondering who is who well into the body of the work. To compensate for that, I often write down a list of characters and relationships so that I can keep track as the story evolves. Ms. Gabaldon paces these introductions so well that I never seem to loose track of the characters.

The unabridged recordings are massive, as you would expect from the physical size of the books. I am listening to Book 4 right now - The Drums of Autumn. It is approximately 44 hours long. All the books fall in that range of listening time - so based on the 6 books currently released, there is about 260 glorious hours of listening. The series is worth every minute - filled with wonderful detail, well constructed characters, and exciting adventure. You will be glad the story doesn't seem to end!

The narrator for the audio version is voice artist, Davina Porter. She is excellent - handles the variety of voices and accents with ease. As with most audio books, the narrator is very important to the success of the recording. And successful she is, because she is almost invisible to the listener who is focused on the story telling rather than the narrator.

So this is a Thumbs Up from me for this wonderful series.

Note: for more information about this series - including all book titles and summaries, follow the link at the beginning of this post.


  1. You know what? I think I read this book some time ago. And I loved it! I remember that whole Scottish HIghlander hunk-o-rama... oh yeah!!!!
    Thanks for bringing back the kiltish memories!

  2. Hmmm, my comment seemed to disappear! Will try again - I have read at least some of this series (I do need to check and see if I have some I missed). What a great combination of history, adventure and juicy love story!

  3. I know, dear son. It is even worse for you. Kris probably only rolls her eyes, but you probably are doing worse than that. :-)

  4. I may try out audio reading. Would be nice to do that while painting or housework or whatever. I finally got a chance to visit your page. Thought I had posted a message earlier today but don't see it now. Will return again another day!

  5. I was quite interested in your book review. I am trying to find books for my new Kindle Fire and have already read three since I got it. I cannot tell how thick the book is on the Kindle and figured out to tell how many pages. So I looks like I am coming up with small books.LOL. I used to keep audiobooks when I was on the road working. I am going to give these a look up.

  6. OH NO, more books for me to read!! : )


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